Being a librarian these days is about a lot more than getting lost among stacks of books. It’s a career of technology and of the transmittance of knowledge, and as such many librarians have taken to the web, sharing their thoughts and musings all across the blogosphere. Here, we bring you what we think are some of the best library-related blogs that the internet has to offer.
1. librarian.net — Holding strong since 1999, rural librarian Jessamyn West relays her thoughts and observations on the evolution of library science technology in what is thought to be “the first single-editor library-oriented weblog.”
2. David Lee King — Digital Branch and Services Manager at the Topeka and Shawnee Public Library, King blogs about library websites and the future of digital technology in relation to library science. (Not to mention fun digital trend-related topics like videoblogging and web 2.0!)
3. Free Range Librarian — K.G. Schneider is the free range librarian, community librarian for Equinox by day and blogger by night. This is her personal blog, detailing her travels and thoughts on writing, librarianship, and the world at large.
4. Hey Jude — Judy O’Connell has a long list of credentials as both a professional and an educator on the subject of information science. In this blog, she reflects on her work, her new experiences, and the changing world of learning.
5. Walt at Random — Walt Crawford is the editorial director for the Library Leadership Network, and has over 40 years of public and college library experience under his belt. While he runs a separate newsletter, this is his personal blog with his own expert musings on music, media, and library science.
6. Annoyed Librarian — The Annoyed Librarian is a mystery blogger, ranting from the shadows with wit and venom. While her posts are quite polarizing, they are topical and discussed enough to become required reading.
7. DIY Librarian — This is the personal blog of Tara Murray, Information Core Director at Penn State University. Dubbed “Librarianship for the People,” her blog details library conference adventures, memes and fun things, and minutiae about days in the life of a good old-fashioned librarian.
8. Information Wants To Be Free — Meredith Farkas is a self-professed tech geek, a published writer with a book about social software in libraries to her credit, and the Distance Learning Librarian at Norwich University. Her blog reflects all sides of her multifaceted life, as well as how to use those social tools of the profession to best serve library patrons.
9. Stephen’s Lighthouse — Stephen Abram is the vice-president of the world’s leading library software company SirsiDynex, and Stephen’s Lighthouse is his personal blog on topics like information technology, social networking, and anything else that may catch his eye.
10. Tame the Web — Michael Stephens is Assistant Professor at Dominican University’s Graduate School of Library and Information Science. Here he writes on library issues, information and social technologies, and how they relate to the people they serve.
11. The Days & Nights of the Lipstick Librarian — Some librarians are complacent in their mousy stereotype, while others are brash and sexy and tell those stereotypes to shove it. The Lipstick Librarian falls squarely in the latter category, and blogs about library events and the hipster side of information science.
12. The Shifted Librarian — Librarian Jenny Levine is fascinated with the way we gather information in this day and ageï¿½ï¿½no longer do we pursue it, so much as it comes to us, and so too must librarians shift their outlook to reflect this. In her blog, she discusses how to adjust to changing technology in a rapidly changing world.
13. Librarian Avengers — In 1997, young Erica Firment wrote a short essay called “Why You Should Fall to Your Knees and Worship a Librarian.” Over a decade later, she is blogger, a User Experience Designer for online community Second Life, and a librarian herself. She blogs about technology, literature, librarianship, and her adventures along the way.
COLLECTIVES and COMMUNITY
14. In the Library with the Lead Pipe — Written by six librarians (like the Clue characters, get it?) from across the United States, who aren’t without their merits: at the moment, two of the six are nominated for office within the ALA. This blog features essays and guest articles focusing on working together to improve libraries and the librarian community.
15. StoryLines — Open to contributions, this Australian blog was created to give support to high school literature programs. It features everything from book reviews to critiques on new Web 2.0 technology.
16. Alternative Teen Services — For teens by teens, this blog describes itself as a “grassroots web site” dedicated to serving teenagers through library services. The teenagers who maintain the site blog about books, technology, and sharing their ideas amongst the supportive environment they are helping to create.
17. School Library Journal Blogs — School Library Journal is the “world’s largest reviewer of books, multimedia, and technology for children and teens,” and their site features ten different blogs covering a range of topics from news and reviews to the latest trends in the library industry. Each of them has a certain unique energy, and it’s impossible to choose just one!
18. Blah Blah Blah Blog — Librarians Patricia Morris and Brad Ward maintain the official blog for the Northeast Florida Library Information Network (NEFLIN), in which they write early and write often about a wide scope of library and information issues.
19. Closed Stacks — An unassuming yet popular little site maintained by a handful of bloggers, dedicated to “ruling the world through information” and writing about the state of information distribution in the age of technology, from Kindles to Youtube.
20. Library Lovers’ LiveJournal — Taking interactive blogging to another level, this is a LiveJournal group where librarians, library science students, and even just library aficionados can congregate to post and converse on topics related to information and literature. Check out their User Info links for great resources!
21. The Society for Librarians* Who Say “Motherfucker” — Another LiveJournal group, also open to students and aides and enthusiasts as well as librarians proper (hence the asterisk), this community endeavors to give those in the field a friendly place to vent about frustrations and days at the library gone horribly wrong.
22. NextGen Librarians — Though LiveJournal is still going strong, many are turning to other forms of social networking: enter the Facebook librarian groups. This group is for young (and “young-at-heart”) librarians interested in forward-thinking methods of information distribution and the emergence of “Library 2.0.”
23. Union Librarian — This blog has a distinct social purpose, keeping up with the latest in social justice and activity within librarian unions, and passing on advice, news, and interesting facts concerning working librarians.
LIBRARIES and REFERENCE
24. iLibrarian — Maintained by up-and-coming librarian and information consultant Ellyssa Kroski, this subsection of the Online Education Database is great resource for the latest news and technology in the “information revolution.”
25. LISNews — The Librarian and Information Science News website has been up and running since 1999, and since then it has not slowed down in its quest to provide readers with articles, links, reviews, and interviews on the latest in library science.
26. ACRLog — As the official Association of College and Research Libraries blog, this is a blog written for and by academic and research librarians, addressing daily professional issues to reflect the place of libraries within “the higher education enterprise.”
27. Library of Congress Blog — Quite simply, this is the official blog of the U.S. Library of Congress. Matt Raymond, the blog’s author, has served as a TV news reporter, a Department of Agriculture speech writer, and UNICEF’s senior advisor for communication before signing on to blog about happenings at our country’s foremost library (and sometimes boxing cats).
28. Librarian in Black — Frustrated by the sheer amount of blogs and websites she had to slog through for up-to-date information on technology and librarianship, Sarah Houghton-Jan (San Jose Public Library digital futures manager) created this site as a “one-stop shop”ï¿½ï¿½providing all the best and latest news for tech-savvy librarians everywhere.
29. Virtual Daveï¿½ï¿½ Real Blog — The virtual (as well as the real) David Lankes is an associate professor at Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies and the director of the school’s Information Institute. Though technically a personal blog, this is written in a highly academic fashion and is chock full of news, not to mention A/V from Lankes’ informative academic presentations.
30. 025.431: The Dewey Blog — Have you ever found yourself wondering about the finer points of the Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC) system? Jonathan Furner is here to helpï¿½ï¿½not only is he the assistant editor of the DDC, but he is the author of this blog, which covers all things related to classification and organization of knowledge.
31. UoL Library Blog — While it started as simply a place for the staff of the University of Leicester Library to share and air their thoughts, this blog has grown into a source of information for all librarians on pertinent events and technology.
32. Law Librarian Blog — Two editors and several contributors work together on this heavily-updated blog that covers all things law library-related, from tools and resources to news and bulletins, plus lighthearted fun on Fridays.
33. Planet Cataloging — Does it have to do with digital or card catalogs? Then you can find it at Planet Cataloging, an automatically-generated blog feed picking up anything and everything related to cataloging and metadata. Sometimes fun, always informative.
34. Judging the Books
35. Judge a Book by Its Cover — Similar in nature, but the former is the work of a high school librarian while the latter works at a public library. The results are clever comments on unintentionally hilarious book covers, from teen drama to vintage romance.
36. The Original Librarian Trading Cards — Are you dying to know the stats on your favorite librarians? You’ve come to the right place. If your favorite librarians aren’t currently represented in the form of a fine trading card and interview, don’t stress! Simply shoot this blog an e-mail and nominate them.
37. A Librarian’s Guide to Etiquette — It seemed like this site was dead for a couple of months, but it is now back up and running strong. Brief and full of dry wit, these microblogs turn their eye to the ins and outs of propriety within the workplace, as “a polite librarian is a good librarian.” Sample: If a colleague calls you “a librarian’s librarian,” it is perfectly acceptable to punch him or her in the mouth.
38. Unshelved — When is a librarian blog not quite a librarian blog? When it’s Unshelved, a daily comic strip about real-life tales as acted out by the fictional staff of Mallville Public Library. Though it’s drawn rather than written, it is as full of truth as it is entertaining.
39. The Laughing Librarian — Life in the information science world can be stressful, but this particular blog is there to provide a library-related laugh, whether from amusing YouTube clips to quotes and jokes. It seems to be updated ever more sporadically, but it’s worth checking in.
40. Library Link of the Day — One link per day, presented up front and sans commentary. What could be better? It might be a fun read, a valuable resource, or an interesting library-related news tidbit, but it’s always new and always library-related.
Can’t get enough of your favorite librarian bloggers? What if you could know what they were thinking 24/7? That’s the way it works with Twitter, the stream-of-consciousness microblogging application that seems to be endearing itself to everyone from students to celebrities to your friendly neighborhood librarian.
41. @librarianmer — The twitter of Meredith Farkas, of Information Wants To Be Free. As a social network expert and tech librarian of the future, who better to harness the power of Web 2.0 technology for up-to-the-minute reports?
42. @joycevalenza — A contributor to School Library Journals, Joyce Valenza keeps the world updated on her movie picks and life events.
43. @eriquita — Erica Firment, of Librarian Avengers, keeps us posted on happenings in the Bay Area.
44. @shifted — Jenny Levine, the Shifted Librarian herself.
45. @diylibrarian — The DIY Librarian’s own Tara Murray.
46. @mstephens7 — Michael Stephens, of Tame the Web.
47. @heyjudeonline — Judy O’Connell, Australian librarian and author of Hey Jude.
48. @LibraryJournal — Keep up to date with news from the Library Journal!
49. @libraryofcongress — The Library of Congress is a wealth of fascinating links.
50. @askundergrad — The official Twitter of University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s undergraduate library. One of the top library science programs in the country!